Video Games

Medical and mental health experts agree that all the data on television violence immediately transfers to violent video games. Research specific to video games conducted in the last few years indicates that violent video games cause much greater physiological changes than non-violent games (heart rate, blood pressure, adrenaline, noradrenaline, testosterone), and that the harmful effect is much greater for males who pretest high on measures of anger and hostility.

Preliminary research conducted by British and Canadian brain researchers indicates game playing may release dopamine, the same kind of pleasure-inducing chemical as cocaine, amphetamines, cigarette smoking, alcohol and other addictive substances.

First-person shooter games also function as killing simulators or conditioning devices of a type and quality used by the military and law enforcement to train staff to both shoot with accuracy and reflexively. Simulators are used extensively and the scientific data on their effectiveness in behaviour modification is exhaustive, according to Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, a world-renowned expert on violence and the roots of aggression.

At right is a screen shot from Grand Theft Auto. The player is kicking a prostitute.

Research

Research reports on violent video games can be found in the Research section. Click here

Government regulation

Information on regulation of video games can be found in the Government Action section. Click here

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